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About DanielBenton

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  • Connection to/interest in ballet** (Please describe. Examples: fan, teacher, dancer, writer, avid balletgoer)
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    Iowa City
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  1. Jennifer Homans' planned biography of Balanchine

    I agree with canbelto. Taken together, the memoirs of Kent, Villella, D'Amboise et al. provide a more interesting picture than the current biographies.
  2. "Where are the Women in Ballet?"

    Lauren Lovette with "Not Our Fate" has made Ratmansky's point somewhat moot. As George Balanchine says in Solomon Volkov's Balanchine's Tchaikovsky, "The feeling is important, not the object".
  3. If memory serves (?) I think Merrill Ashley coached the Bolshoi in Diamonds a few years ago, and Karin von Aroldingen is still an active coach. In coaching music, a good teacher is able, while remaining true to the essence of a piece, to dissociate themselves from the way they learned a piece and thus have a fresh perspective when listening to students perform. Bolshoi, Mariinsky, Paris Opera and NYCB are so different in their training and presentation, and thus it would be fascinating to get their views. Balanchine (like Beethoven, Bach, or Shakespeare), has a universal message such that his compositions can be presented in these really different traditions.
  4. It would be interesting to know what the original generation of dancers (I am thinking of Allegra Kent, Karin von Aroldingen, Jacques d'Amboise etc.) who may have seen this summer's performances thought about it. Their thoughts on how Balanchine's works are being passed down and out of New York City to other companies would be most welcome.
  5. Jennifer Homans' planned biography of Balanchine

    Thank you all for a very interesting discussion. Because I believe the most enduring artistic aspect of Balanchine's work is his choreography informed by his musical acumen (sometimes combined with the "mind of the poet" [Croce]) resulting in a look into the "Real World", I would naturally like to see an emphasis on that, but a biography is probably not the place for it. Probably more of the flavor of CM Joseph's writing but less technical (musically speaking) and more accessible to any person who can listen and watch at the same time.
  6. All the SAB summer school kids were there tonight. Haven't taken deportment yet.
  7. A brief first impression: Emeralds: A professional dancer friend who is a NYCB docent said to me (paraphrase): My God, did you see how tshe (one of the principal ladies) used her arms and hands? The way they move through space is as if the air has weight to it." Some of the movements had beautifully synchronized movement and music; other not so much. Rubies: In addition to excellent performances by Reichlen, M Fairchild and the corps, Joaquin da Luz was practically channeling Edward Villella. Diamonds: Some of the orchestral playing was outstanding, bringing out various sections and individual instruments. Played rather slowly, which was probably to the Bolshoi's taste. Olga Smirnova was as advertised, unbelievable. She had said in an interview that the pas de deux was both beautiful in a cold way (like diamonds), and also rather sad. It was exactly that. She has a mystery about her that I have seen rarely, in old video, in a few others.
  8. There are some 3rd ring 1st row seats for Sat evening (Smirnova dancing Diamonds) for $150.
  9. I second Quiggin, Jack. Always good to read your descriptions.
  10. NYCB 2017-2018 Season

    The season brochure is online. At the website menu, down near the bottom is "17/18 season"
  11. NYCB 2017-2018 Season

    On the phone today the ticket office said the season subscription brochures are about to or soon to be mailed out.
  12. NYCB 2017-2018 Season

    Also, programs are once again listed by date on the NYCB website
  13. NYCB 2017-2018 Season

    Ticket office is accepting subscription orders starting this morning
  14. NYCB 2017-2018 Season

    Alas, they took it down! The NYCB keepers of the website are very capricious
  15. NYCB 2017-2018 Season

    The programs are now shown by date in the NYCB website calendar